Freeski slopestyle set to make historic Laax Open debut

by Miles
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You can basically throw a dart at the men’s startlist and hit a name with something strong to offer this week, but perhaps tops amongst them is Matej Svancer (AUT), who has seemed to thrive on the Laax course thus far through training. Completely unpredictable and endlessly creative, Svancer seems due for his first slopestyle World Cup podium after scoring two big air top-3’s last season.

The host Swiss team, meanwhile, will have Andri Ragettli leading the way. While Ragettli was the one passed by Ruud on the all-time wins list in Copper, the 24-year-old remains the most successful World Cup freeskier ever with his 24 podiums and five crystal globe wins, and should be counted on to push for a podium in any event he drops in on – especially on home soil.

And, with the likes of Fabien Boesch, Kim Gubser, and the Wili brothers Thierry and Colin also repping the white cross, the Swiss will have some muscle to back Ragettli up in the coming days.

The U.S. team is launching a whole army of elite skiers here in Laax, including Beijing 2022 slopestyle gold medallist Alex Hall, big air silver medallist Colby Stevenson, 2018/19 slopestyle crystal globe winner Mac Forehand, Big Air Chur third place finisher Troy Podmilsak…the list goes on and on.

Canada’s Max Moffat and Evan McEachran, Javier Lliso and Thibault Magnin of Spain, and Beijing 2022 slopestyle bronze medallist Jesper Tjader and Oliwer Magnusson of Sweden are few more names that pop off the start list.

We’ll finish off with the nation where we started the this look at the men’s field, as along with Ruud the Norwegians have perhaps the strongest top-to-bottom slopestyle squad on site here in Laax. With Sebastian Schjerve, Tormod Frostad, Eirik Saetoroey and Christian Nummedal all set to drop in, team Norge is looking strong indeed.


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